After traveling to the different parts of the world for the last seven years, I have learned a lot about staying safe- sometimes a tough task. The following are my best travel safety tips for getting away with the trouble on your next trip.
Nothing spoils an adventure faster than getting robbed or scammed!
While on my visit to Panama, some women distracted me and stole my laptop from my backpack. I thought it was gone forever, until amazingly, this happened three months later. I got lucky.
In Mexico, a pickpocket almost grabbed my iPhone when I was walking. I somehow managed to get that back too, chasing him down the road screaming like a madman and brandishing a bottle of wine!
You do not even need to travel globally to have bad stuff happen. In Miami, my purse was stolen when I was not paying the attention.
Now, after seven long years of constant travel around the globe, I have grown accustomed to two-faced tour guides, deceitful taxi drivers, insincere offers of help, and occasional scam or robbery. I also know how people care about their hard-earned money and do different things from getting cheap domestic flight tickets to booking affordable hotels to save extra penny.
For the most part, our beautiful world is very much safe for travelers. I have no intentions of scaring you too much! However, it is wise to be ready and prepared for the worst.
Keeping that in mind, here are my best travel safety tips to assist you minimizing your chances of anything bad happening to you or your luggage during your travels.
Getting to Know about Travel Scams
Whatever place you choose to go in the world, you will always encounter people ready to cheat you. If you are lucky, they will be kind obvious- but there are many of craftier, professional con-artists too.
Everybody think they are too smart to be tricked- but it happens.
You better learn about the most common travel scams. Use Google and do an in-depth research into worst scams going on at your specific destination.
For instance, broken or damaged taxi meters in Costa Rica. The ring scam in Paris or the milk scam in Cuba. Each country has its own ones to watch out for!
Put Down Emergency Info
When disaster strikes, you hardly have time to search for numbers for ambulance services or local police, or direction to the nearby embassy for your country. Also, you may be too panicky and stressed to think straight.
Do not you in that position. Rather, record that information in advance, and make an Emergency Plan to follow if things go bad. You can save it on your phone. You can write it down on a tiny card or paper-sheet. Get it laminated to protect it from moisture, and hide it in your purse/wallet.
Go through the State Department’ Website
The United States Department of State has a webpage for every country across the globe, where it lists all known obstacles and current threats to the safety of travelers.
However, a significant caveat for this one: it is the State Department’s task to warn you about everything that might go wrong, which is somewhat different to what is likely to go wrong. This means their suggestion or advice is on the hyper-cautious side. Factor that in, when you dig up more on-the-ground level information.
But researching travel-related warnings will offer a general idea of what’s going on in the region you are visiting, and particular areas you may want to avoid.
Lock Up Your Belongings
Keeping aside the fact that traveling with anything costly is a bad idea, there’ll always be something you can’t afford to have stolen. For example, I always keep my expensive camera and its gear while traveling.
Your job is to lessen the easy opportunities for theft.
At first, know that most bags are not very secure. It is easy to feel that a locked or even a zipped bag is sufficient to deter any thief, and doze off next to it. Be aware of your luggage and valuables. Try to keep an eye on your valuables in such a way that it wouldn’t possible for someone to steal without you knowing. You can use your backpacks as your pillows in trains and buses. I think it’s far easier than booking cheap flight tickets, right?
Get Travel Insurance
In case you are really worried about the safety of you and your belongings while you travel, you can completely relax if you’ve some good insurance.
If you are going to travel for a long time, there are some long-term options like mixture of health insurance from IMG Global and photography insurance from TCP Photography Insurance.
Do not believe the hype. Frankly speaking, there has never been a safer time to travel! So, get out and enjoy your trip!
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